Izumi Ishii Dolphin Eco-Tourism Needs Our Help

By Kirsten Massebeau

Izumi Ishii ex-dolphin hunter turned away from killing dolphins to embrace their intelligence, beauty and friendship. As a young boy Izumi grew up in the world of the dolphin hunters. He saw and photographed many dolphins during dolphin drives in Futo. His appreciation of dolphins turned him away from hunting and towards dolphin and whale watching.

I filmed this pic at the age of a tenth grader (1964).
This dolphin was driven into the port.
This dolphin had very sad eyes on a beach.
I felt it.
Only eyes go out of the surface of the water subtly.
To see it, I pressed the shutter.
This scene is still left to me in a heart. (Izumi Ishii)

He was the first to step away from dolphin hunting. In 1997 Izumi Ishii changed his life forever by turning away from dolphin hunting and instead embracing dolphin and whale watching. In 2002 a dream came true when he began his Dolphin Eco-Tourism business. Since that time he has taken out many people of Japan and other countries to see dolphins and whales in their natural habitat the ocean where they are wild and free. His wish to educate people about these amazing beings came true.

Today he needs our help. His message is one of dolphin freedom and love for dolphins. We must support his voice,and his desire to see all dolphin and whale hunting ended. By supporting Ishii-san we support a new day for the dolphins of Japan.

What can you do to help dolphins in Japan? Support Izumi Ishii as he makes his final payment on the loan due August 10th for Miss Bright Sea. Let us support a dolphin hunters move to dolphin watching. Ishii-san is positive change in Japan! Why you should help:

Ishii san now needs everyone’s help to make this happen. Ishii san was forced to take out a series of loans to get through the tough economy and has remained true to his beliefs that hunting dolphins is no longer the way to earn a living. He has suffered ridicule amongst his fellow Japanese fisherman for speaking out against the drive fisheries. He has hoped he could be a role model in Japan and help lead the eco-tourist movement in Japan. On August 10th the final payment is due. Ishii san needs our help to raise the final 600,000 JY (about $6,000 US Dollars) Ishii san is an example to all Dolphin Hunters in Japan what can happen if you stop the slaughter. It is critical that the world show its support for what he has done. Ishii san has planned to travel to other parts of Japan and share his success as an eco-tourist operator and we need to ensure he has the opportunity to do so. Please make you donation, no matter how small or big today. This is a step in the battle to end the slaughter and we can help!

Donate now and help keep the dream of dolphin freedom and safety from hunting alive!

Facebook Twitter Trending Dolphins

By Kirsten Massebeau

Pilot Whales in The Cove Awaiting Slaughter
By SSCS Cove Guardians

While hurricane Sandy devastates the East Coast of the United States a very different issue continues to make news and pulsate through the lines of social media. Each year in Taiji, Japan from September to March a small group of men hunt dolphins for the captive industry, and to supply a small demand for the meat which is toxic. In 2009 the academy award winning film, “The Cove” was released in an effort to expose the brutal killing and capture of dolphins in Taiji. The world was horrified. Many people wanted to believe, “The Cove” had exposed and ended the cruel treatment of dolphins in Taiji but sadly that is not the case. During the 2011 hunting season Dieter Hagmann of Atlantic Blue secretly obtained footage of how slowly the dolphins die, and the terrible extent of their suffering at the hand of the hunters.

On October 30, 2012 a huge pod of approximately 120 pilot whales was driven into the deadly cove. Today as livestream was broadcast to the world via the Sea Shepherd Cove Guardians the world watched as the cruel dolphin hunters inflicted pain and suffering beyond imagination on these helpless dolphins. The pilot whales huddled together, were systematically dragged to their slow and painful deaths. Babies panicked and suffocated under the nets while adults rushed onto the rocks but were dragged back to the shallows where death awaited.

Taiji: many pilot whales struggling to fight for last breath.Baby caught in nets. So brutal & words can’t describe this horror #tweet4taiji

Baby suffocates under nets by SSCS Cove Guardians

Pilot whales struggle during slaughter by SSCS Cove Guardians

While half of the huge pod was transported via skiffs to the butcher house the rest of the pod waits, huddled, hungry, and swimming in the blood of their family members! According to Save Japan Dolphin Taiji Cove Monitors the pilot whale quota has most likely been filled today:

Killing quota (161) for pilot whales likely to be filled by now. Hunters should release remaining animals!

Take Action! Activists in Social Media on Facebook and Twitter are asking you to take action now! Sign the petition asking the BBC take a crew to Taiji to cover the slaughter here. Contact your Japanese Embassy and ask them to stop issuing permits for hunting dolphins. Send a free fax here to the Taiji Fisherman’s Union 81-73-559-3018, Mayor Sangen of Taiji 81-73-559-2801, Dolphin Resort 81-73-559-2810.


Please you, do not kill a baby
The baby is innocent
The pilot whales, mainly feed on squid
Please do your research on the web page
Pilot whales are not stealing your fish.

The Cove Runs Red via Save the Blood Dolphins

Tweet: #tweet4dolpins, #tweet4taiji,fax, email, call, and share! Let our voices be heard! Together we can end it!

Japan Dolphins Day 2012 Portland, Oregon


By Kirsten Massebeau

Today, dolphins are known to be highly intelligent, and self-aware beings with brains comparable to mans. Every day more scientific data is compiled on how similar dolphins and humans really are. They carry their offspring for about the same amount of time and nurse their young for as long as 2 to 3 years, the pilot whale as long as 6 years. Dolphin groups known as pods live in socially complex societies consisting of families, that show advanced cultures and traditions. Dolphins have interacted with man since time began, trying to help when ever needed, to reach out and share their many gifts of love and laughter freely.

Picture provided by Maria Christina Cely

September 1st marks a sad day for the dolphins swimming near the coast of Taiji, Japan.  As exposed, by the academy award-winning film, “The Cove” the traditional practice of driving pods of dolphins into the blood cove continues but today it is driven by captivity. Each year upwards 2000 dolphins are brutally slaughtered in Taiji, Japan. The Taiji dolphin hunters confuse the dolphins using a wall of sound created by dropping metal pipes into the water and then tapping on them. Once the dolphins sonar is rendered useless, the hunters drive the pod into the cove using boats. The pod is separated, the attractive young netted off from their parents, family and community. These young dolphins, are forced to hear their families brutally slaughtered while they swim in their blood. The selected juveniles dolphins are trained and sold into captivity upwards of $100,000. Once sold, they are packed  in ice and shipped worldwide, destined to spend their lives in small cement tanks forced to perform for their food. Their lifespan shortened by as much as 95%, most die within the first year.

Killing Dolphins in Taiji is Slow and Cruel from BlueVoice.org on Vimeo.

Today the dolphin meat is known to be toxic yet the killing continues. Follow the link to Save Japan Dolphins and learn more about the toxic flesh of dolphins. Like man dolphins are at the top of the food chain all ocean pollutants accumulating in their flesh and blubber.

Ric O’Barry of Save Japan Dolphins Holding a Package of Taiji dolphin meat

So why do the 26 men known as “fisherman”, slaughter the dolphins day after day? Thanks to marine parks worldwide the motivation to continue capturing dolphins is there so the hunt remains. Day after day in the winter trainers come into the cove selecting the best and leaving the rest to die slow deaths.  The dolphins thrashing bodies, and cries for mercy echo through the cove as  entire communities of dolphins, their traditions, their sparkle, their love, gone forever. The dolphin drives of Taiji are big business for the Fisherman’s Union of Taiji. The dolphin captivity trade for marine parks and aquariums supports the cove killings. This is income the hunters,  are not willing to give up regardless of the dolphins suffering, so clear to the world.

        The world is calling for change

On Friday August 31, 2012  the people of Portland, Oregon will join the world in asking Japan to stop issuing permits to slaughter dolphins.

All Oregonians and visitors please join us as we stand up for the dolphins of Taiji!

A call to action by Save Japan Dolphins! 

Detail about the rally are listed below. The rally begins at 10am and will run from 10am to 3pm in front of the Wells Fargo Center, in downtown Portland.

Instructions and suggestions for a successful rally! Follow instructions and get direction from your event organizers:

  • Make signs and Banners supporting the dolphins and telling their story. Please not use overly graphic or racist photos and slogans. Our issue is with the “fisherman” and marine parks that keep the hunt alive not the Japanese people.
  • Bring a bottle of water to stay hydrated.
  • Wear your dolphin t-shirts. Ribbon Event pins will again be provided!
  • Plan on handing out media and fliers. Fliers and Save Japan Dolphin cards will be provided as will a flier.
  • Take pictures and video to share with the world.
  • Stay on the sidewalk and let people get by. The Wells Fargo Building is a busy so treat all those passing by respectfully.
  • No abusive language or racism will be tolerated.
  • You are responsible for your own things. Try to leave valuables at home.
  • Be positive and have a great time! Together We Can Make a Difference!